On Monday 23rd March, much of the UK public saw an unprecedented shift in their working dynamic. Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a universal lockdown, urging all but key workers “in this moment of national emergency, to stay at home”. These exceptional circumstances have led to considerable uncertainty, with many workers understandably concerned about the prospect of adapting their working practices on little notice. The majority of the UK’s workforce are now working from home, and here at SilverDoor we are no different. The challenges presented by this sudden change in routine should not be diminished, so we’ve put together our 5 top tips for staying healthy, productive and positive while working from home.
Set clear boundaries
It’s all too easy to fall into the trap of associating your time at home with leisure and recreation. It is therefore essential that you take steps to separate your work from your home life, and you can start by organising your work space.
Whether you’re working from a desk, the dinner table or have fashioned a home office out of an ironing board, make this space a work-only zone. This might be more easily said than done, but designating an area specifically to work can really boost your concentration.
It’s also important to consider the effects of your work attire. Far be it from us to tell you how to dress, but respected productivity experts tend to agree that the ‘you are what you wear’ principle holds strong even when working from home. Perhaps try switching your dressing gown for an overshirt for a day and see if it helps!
Maintain your routine
Many of us have been thrown off our usual working schedules, but that doesn’t mean we can’t improvise. Setting a daily or weekly timetable can help conserve structure in your temporary home office. Start by prioritising your most important tasks and do your best not to deviate from them. Supplement this with some small, achievable goals and be proud of your accomplishments. Once your working day is over, down your tools and relax, you’ve earned it!
Stay in constant contact with your colleagues
Working from home can leave you feeling lonely, demotivated and detached. Here at SilverDoor we ascribe the utmost importance to our team’s well-being. Daily, informal team calls via video conferencing help us to feel connected. With this in mind, try to make use of the technology available to you. Where possible, we would encourage you to call your colleagues rather than email. A sense of community spirit can do wonders for your mental welfare.
Most important of all is to be mindful of how you feel. If you feel stressed, pressured, confused or just a little distracted then don’t hesitate to speak to a colleague or a member of your HR team. We’re all in the same boat, so there are always people ready at hand to listen. Take a look at our top 10 ways to look after your mental health.
Stay healthy and active
As yet we haven’t been given a definitive end date for this lockdown, so it’s more important than ever to take care of yourself and your loved ones. Cooking from your own kitchen means you can eat well and you can stay hydrated by keeping a water bottle on hand. What’s more, the short commute from your bed to your ‘home office’ gives you every chance of getting your often elusive 8 hours sleep.
Exercising under the current conditions is challenging but with a little improvisation you can certainly put your body through its paces. If you’re stuck for inspiration, we’ve put together 6 effective methods to staying fit at home to help keep you on top of your game.
Take a break!
The feeling of freedom while working from home is often interlaced with a slight feeling of guilt. Am I getting enough work done? Am I contributing to the team? It’s natural to feel as though you could be doing more, but following these essential tips will help you to manage your time, stay productive and alleviate any performance-based anxiety.
According to modern research, taking regular breaks has been shown to restore motivation, increase productivity and boost creativity. These breaks can come in many forms, whether it’s a quick walk to renew your focus, a moment to meditate or simply switching to a different task. Decide what’s best for you and find your groove!
Keen for more isolation inspiration? Our parent’s survival guide is a must-read for those juggling their work and family lives and our carefully crafted list of must-watch shows is sure to keep you enthralled during your down time. Let us know your suggestions in the comments below!